Trip Start Feb 23, 2005
Trip End Mar 18, 2005

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Flag of India  ,
Monday, March 7, 2005

We just pulled into the dock at Mangalore. It looks like we are in the heart of iron works, everything is rusty red in color. The sky is hazy, lots of smoke stacks, the street near the dock looks like it has been watered. Believe me, there hasn't been any rain.
We were told that they mine a lot of iron here. I am not surprised.
Part of the day's activities include a tour of a cashew factory, the drive was lovely, mountainous, very different from what we have seen.The factory was interesting, and the labor intensive. Every cashew is handled by Indian women. We saw the fruit that the cashew comes from, it looks kind of like a soft apple with a thumb-like appendage hanging from the bottom, and that appendage is where the nut comes from. It has to be picked, dried, hulled and then each nut has a thin membrane of skin scraped off by native women. I will never complain about the price of cashews again. Of course, I doubt very much that the workers were paid much at all.
On the way back to Mangalore, Mukul pointed out different trees, jack fruit, cashews, fish tail palms. He is very knowledgeable.
Dinner on board tonight was Fillipino night, the waiters were dressed in that style, many are Fillipino and the food was also Fillipino. I had only vegetables for dinner, then I decided to have a Fillipino dessert. What a dessert! It was served in what looked like a sundae goblet, had something in the bottom of it, silly me, I thought it might be chocolate. Not so!! The dessert chef put some crushed ice over this stuff in the bottom, then a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Sounds good doesn't it? Not so. The stuff in the bottom turned out to be corn kernels, white beans and cubes of cooked potatoes. I didn't ask for the recipe.
Mary Ann had a terrible bite on her ankle, it swelled up a lot, she had to get some medicine for it. In the meantime, she told Mukul that she had "elephantitis". He began to laugh, and said "Oh, we would make a fortune, you hold out you foot and then" he gestured as if he were playing a stringed instrument. It was just hilarious. The native Indians will do anything to make a buck, begging is the least of it.
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